January 14, 2009

Do Gay-Straight Alliances Make a Difference?

That's the question asked in this article from the Chicago area Pioneer Local newspaper which focused on the impact of gay-straight alliances in American high schools. The answer may seem like another DUH! moment, but it is important to have data to support initiatives like this.

High schools with gay-straight alliances may be safer places for homosexual, bisexual and transgender youth, new research suggests.

The 2007 National School Climate Survey: The Experiences of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth in Our Nations Schools was conducted by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network known as GLSEN, a New-York-based national education association.

This survey found that when high schools had such alliances, these students reported hearing fewer homophobic comments and experiencing less harassment or assaults because of their sexual orientation or gender expression than students attending schools without gay-straight alliances. They also said they felt more of a sense of belonging to their school. Yet only just over a third of surveyed students surveyed reported that they had such an alliance at their school.

This survey indicates how a GLSEN-affiliated organization helps attitudes toward GLBT students and makes their high school experience (which can often be traumatic) more manageable. The relative scarcity of these groups, however, shows that there is still much more work to be done.

Click here to read the Pioneer Local article.

3 comments:

  1. Thanks for the great post! I am a GSA sponsor at my school and feel that GSA´s most certainly DO make a differnece.

    Derrick

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  2. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


    Ruth

    http://www.infrared-sauna-spot.info

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  3. BrendaJim:
    All Caffected couples must stand together forming a unified "Pro-Marriage" voice that declares; "We believe in Marriage for Everyone." When the time arrives that marriage becomes a union of two people based on love and commitment, and those marriages are encouraged and affirmed, is the time our country will see divorce rates plummet.
    In Caffection,
    MariahByron

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